Friday, February 8, 2013


Cholesterol is a fat-like substance that provides energy to the body's cells. Produced from the carbs and fats that we eat, cholesterol is extremely essential for the body to work in a proper manner; however, too much cholesterol in the body leads to its build-up in the walls of our arteries and this increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Thus, it becomes essential to lower cholesterol in your daily diet, especially if tests have proved that your levels are too high.

Cholesterol is divided into two parts: LDL and HDL. Low Density Lipoprotein leads to clogged arteries. Today we look at HDL and how good cholesterol foods are important to fight LDL.

Good cholesterol: What is HDL?

HDL or High Density Lipoprotein: To go from point A to point B you need transport. Same 
theory applies for the bloodstream, for good cholesterol to be transported you need a carrier, that's HDL. 

HDL also acts like a 
filter - it reduces and reuses LDL. Hence it is important to lower cholesterol and one way to fight it is through good cholesterol food. Following are food items that will help you boost your good cholesterol level.

Facts about good cholesterol

- HDL cholesterol normally makes up 20%-30% of your total blood cholesterol.

- There is evidence that HDL helps protect against the accumulation of plaques (fatty deposits) in the walls of coronary arteries.

- Research suggests that a five-point drop in HDL cholesterol is linked to a 25% increase in heart disease risk.

- In prospective studies -- that is, studies that follow participants for a period of time to watch for events like heart attacks or death from heart disease -- HDL usually proves to be the lipid risk factor most linked to heart disease risk.

- HDL cholesterol levels are thought to be impacted by genetics.

Women typically have higher HDL cholesterol levels than men. About a third of men and about a fifth of women have HDL levels below 40 mg/dL. Doctors consider levels of less than 40 mg/dL to be low.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 1


20-30 minutes of aerobic exercise on three four times a week can spike you good cholesterol. Experts suggest that at least 40 minutes to 
60 minutes of exercise on a daily basis helps in lowering 5 to 10% of LDL cholesterol and HDL cholesterol can be raised between 3 to 6%. Irrespective of whatever type, intensity and genre of exercise, you go for, it is an essential component of your cholesterol-lowering regimen. 

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 2

Kick the butt

You can raise your HDL levels by discontinuing your 
smoking habit by almost four points.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 3

Weight loss

Losing four kgs of weight can increase your good cholesterol by one and a half points. Try and keep your BMI 25 or lower than that.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 4

Choose fat wisely

Cut down on saturated and trans fat from your diet every day. These tend to increase bad cholesterol and decrease good cholesterol. Instead replace them with unsaturated fats - flaxseed oil, olive oil, rice bran oil etc. These oils still have calories so keep their usage in moderation; you don't want to put on calories while raising your HDL.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 5

No no for simple carbohydrates.

Avoid foods that are high glycemic foods, like cakes, cookies, processed cereals, white breads etc. They can lower your HDL and raise the levels of another fat in your bloodstream, triglycerides.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 6

Drink in moderation

We aren't promoting 
alcoholism nor are we banning it completely, studies have found that one drink per day for women and two for men can increase good cholesterol levels by four points. For those with addiction problems or liver disease read ahead to get safer HDL increasing tips.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 7


Fibers in our, vegetables, nuts and grains spike good cholesterol levels in our body, so hog on to salads as your mid meal snack. Also a handful of nuts can boost your HDL drastically. Try out vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, carrots, Brussels sprouts, greens, pumpkin and sweet potatoes. These veggies have the power to control your LDL. For added benefits, add a wide range of colour to your plate - include greens, orange, and yellow in your diet.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 8


Bananas, pears, apples, avocados, prunes and berries are rich in calcium, antioxidants and fiber, but they can lower your LDL. Among fruit juices, orange juice stands at the top of the list; it's a great way to energise, stay cool and healthy with just a glass.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 9

Avoid anabolic steroids

Acording to Webmed, "Anabolic steroids are drugs such as testosterone or substances that work liketestosterone. Doctors prescribe them to treat problems such as delayed pubertyand other medical problems that cause the body to make very low amounts of testosterone.

These decrease your HDL levels, in addition to all their other potential health dangers.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 10

Medication therapy

Vitamin B3 or nicotinic acid works as a best therapy for for raising HDL levels.Studies have shown increases of 20 percent to 35 percent. This may have side effects like a racing heart or flushing so its recommended to be taken in small doses in the beginning to minimize these effects

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 11

Other dietary ways

Cranberry juice has been shown to increase HDL levels. Fish and other foods containing omega-3 fatty acids can also increase HDL levels. Calcium supplementation can increase good cholesterol in post menopausal women. India is surrounded by sea and has several large perennial rivers, hence there is no reason to not eat fish. Indians can source natural Omega 3 from Indian salmon or raavas, sardines or trale, mackerel or bangda, Tuna or chura, and ghol fish. Omega 3 not only reduces cholesterol but also High Blood Pressure.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 12


The protein present in soybean protects against various heart ailments. Soybean helps in lowering bad cholesterol and simultaneously increases good cholesterol.

An analysis found that soy protein, plus the isoflavones found in soy "raised HDL levels 3%, which could reduce coronary heart disease risk about 5%," says Mark Messina, PhD, a nationally known soy expert.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 13


Fibrous food lowers the absorption of bad cholesterol in the bloodstream. Consumption of oats or oatmeal should be on your diet if you love deep fried food and a good drizzle of oil now and then. Why? Well simply put, oats have a high fiber content that reduces LDL in the blood.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 14

Bacteria present in curds are a treasure trove for enzymes that improve your digestive tract. Plus yogurt contains HDL. However, it is advisable to go for low fat curds.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 15

Dark chocolate

Now-a-days you can have chocolate in your sandwich, as fondue, as a dip. Make your choice but always settle for dark chocolate. You want to live long and stay ageless!

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 16

Popeye power: Spinach

Popeye the sailor was quite right when crediting his muscle power to this green leafy vegetable. It is believed that spinach contains around 13 flavonoid compounds which keep us away from
cancer, heart diseases and osteoporosis. 1/2 cup of this lutein-rich food daily guards us against heart attacks.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 17


Garlic helps lower cholesterol and fights plaque that 
clogs your arteries.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 18


Compounds present in blueberries are good for your heart. Eating blueberries regularly can sharpen your mind as well as lower bad cholesterol level.
Eat not more than 3-4 garlic cloves each day, to obtain maximum heart benefits.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 19

Okra or Lady finger

This vegetable is a great agent for lowering bad cholesterol, because it is a good source of soluble fibre. But avoid frying these, as that would diminish their nutritional properties.

Raise your good cholesterol levels Tip # 20

Green tea

Results may vary from individual to individual, but some studies suggest that drinking green tea early in the morning may fight high cholesterol

No comments: